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Interview with:

Soda [officialsoda] 

What is your favorite genre? Can you provide a link to a site where we can read some of your work or learn something about it?
As far as my favorite genre goes, I'm really all over the map, much with everything else i like. If I enjoy it, then that's plainly it. I love Horror, Drama, Fantasy, Young Adult and beyond. I'm inspired by all of it. Right now, aside from my personal writing projects I do have an awesome Music Blog that I encourage people to read. I really enjoy it and think there is lots of quality there. https://musicsurvivalguide.wordpress.com And you can navigate to most anything through my site at: WWW.OFFICIALSODA.COM
What is your creative process like? What happens before sitting down to write?
I can really write at the drop of a hat. There are times when I may not write for a moment but then I'm literally pushed out of bed at 2am by an idea for a song, a poem...anything. I don't really have any pregame prep. When I sit to let it flow it just comes. I guess I'm pretty lucky in that aspect.
What type of reading inspires you to write?
Be it that I really love to write Young Adult Horror and Fantasy, that kind of stuff really inspires me. Lots of 80's and 90's stuff really psyches me up too. It's fun for me to hang my hat a lot in those decades. Most of my favorite stuff comes from those time periods, I find endless inspiration there.
What do you think are the basic ingredients of a story?
When I read I like to be transported into the book, the scene. I think a good writer can paint a picture with words and when you achieve that I think that's pretty incredible. When I sit down to write I like to get into juicy detail, use words as colors. I want people fully invested in what I lay down to write.
What well known writers do you admire most?
Ray Bradbury, R.L. Stine, S.E. Hinton, Poe and many more.
What is required for a character to be believable? How do you create yours?
Likability, reliability, conviction. Anything really that makes us as people believable in reality. You want to feel something from art. Diving deep to create and bring quality to the surface is very important. If you can't convince yourself then you sure as hell can't convince anybody else.
Are you equally good at telling stories orally?
Yes and no. I don't love public speaking. It's funny because I've played in bands forever, put me in front of a wall of noise and I'm golden. It's the quiet scenarios that sometimes make my hair stand on end a bit. Deep breaths, deep breaths!
Deep down inside, who do you write for?
My main goal in everything I do, whether it's Music, Writing, Art and beyond I always want to connect with people. It's all I've ever wanted out of this and it's been my primary goal since day one.
Is writing a form of personal therapy? Are internal conflicts a creative force?
Oh absolutely! Especially with songwriting. It's the best way to express yourself, hands down. You can put anything you like into what you do. As far as conflicts go, healing from within is a major part of getting through something. Creating is the best and healthiest way to do that. It also allows you to share with others and hopefully have people relate when they really need to. It's kind of like gift giving.
Does reader feed-back help you?
Yes. Good and bad equally. Criticism is infinite and you can't please everyone. You need somewhat of a hard shell.
Do you share rough drafts of your writings with someone whose opinion you trust?
Yes, especially since I am my own worst critic and somewhat of a perfectionist. Having someone else get a glance into a work in progress or a completed piece is euphoric because that's the beginning of letting go and allowing it to spread it's wings.
Do you believe you have already found "your voice" or is that something one is always searching for?
Always searching for. We learn every day.
What do you surround yourself with in your work area in order to help your concentrate?
As well as being an "artist" I'm really also an ultimate fanboy. My home is full of music, movies, books, posters, pictures, toys, cool junk. I love being immersed in my favorite things because it always brings me joy and without it where would my inspiration have began? We all have things that we love that inspire us and push us to do a number of things, that also includes family and friends. It's like a circle.
Do you write on a computer? Do you print frequently? Do you correct on paper? What is your process?
Nowadays, mostly a computer. It's just easier. I've pen and papered for a long time, I still do with song lyrics. But with lengthier stuff I tend to place finger to key.
What has been your experience with publishers?
That they don't want new talent. It's so bizarre to me and that's why it's very difficult to get an agent. You have to query, jump through hoops, follow so many rules before you can even get somebody to sometimes even read a first line of a manuscript. Lucky for me I'm persistent and very tenacious and pretty independent. DIY is important and it's the way so many choose to or have to go in this day and age.
What are you working on now?
As stated earlier in the interview my Music Blog. I have a lot of stuff at home finished too, which is kind of crazy, it just sits around...from full novels to short stories. It's all on the list, trust me!
What do you recommend I do with all those things I wrote years ago but have never been able to bring myself to show anyone?
Revisit them. Embrace them. It's all a snapshot of your history, we all started somewhere.

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New York

[officialsoda] Soda
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